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The Reliquary Effect

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About the Author

Cynthia Hahn is professor of art history and director of graduate studies in art history at Hunter College and the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. She is the author or coauthor of several books, including Strange Beauty. "


"[A] splendid book. . . . The Reliquary Effect sparkles with gorgeous pictures, and the text is deservedly full of epithets such as 'sumptious and spectacular, ' 'rich and lavish, ' 'lavish and extensive.' The objects under discussion were in most cases the most precious possessions of some of Europe's most powerful individuals and institutions over more than a thousand years. . . . Hahn elegantly elides her discussion of Christian relics into an investigation of their secular equivalents. . . . A page-turner."-- "Art Newspaper"
"Hahn has filled an important gap in scholarship. This book is the first to understand and analyze reliquaries as creations for the stimulation of attention and the capturing of desire. Hahn's supreme knowledge and comprehensive approach enable her to look behind the surface of the reliquary, following its developments over time and drawing some sometimes surprising conclusions. As a contribution to the cross-cultural study of art, The Reliquary Effect shows how we can strengthen our understanding of the origins and foundations of our culture and those of others."--Gerhard Lutz, curator of the Dommuseum Hildesheim "Anthropology Review Database"

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